"Circulating Natures: Water-Food-Energy"

Conference // "Circulating Natures: Water-Food-Energy"

Seventh Biennial Conference of the European Society for Environmental History (ESEH), Munich, Germany

The ESEH conference will bring an estimated five hundred participants to Munich. Also, for the first time, alumni of the Carson Center established and prominent scholars from more than forty different countries will gather in Munich to discuss their work. It will take place from 20-24 August 2013, and will be hosted by the Rachel Carson Center for Environment and Society-the world's largest Centre for Advanced Study in the environmental humanities. Other sponsors include LMU Munich, the Deutsches Museum, and the City of Munich.

Call For Papers

ESEH conferences occur biennially. "Biennial" is a term associated in particular with botany. Most plants are annuals or perennials. But a biennial flowers every two years, following a period of dormancy — just like our Society. Though some biennial plants are merely flowers, others are edible. Thinking about biennial vegetables such as carrots and parsley focuses our intellectual appetites on the conference theme of "Circulating Natures: Water-Food-Energy". We wish, of course, to attract high-quality scholarship and to tap into intellectual energy-flows related to all aspects of the blooming field of environmental history. At the same time, we specifically encourage proposals related to "Circulating Natures". While always situated locally, nature also circulates regionally and globally through the movement of natural resources, products, people and non-human biota. What happens in — and comes from — one part of the world can have profound effects on other, often distant places. We wish to explore this theme of circulation — which is of basic importance to the multifaceted relationships of humans with the rest of nature at different times and in diverse places — with specific reference to the three, often interrelated, subjects of "Water, Food, and Energy".

The following are just a few examples of potential topics and themes that explore the theme of "Circulating Natures: Water-Food-Energy" from the diverse perspectives of environmental history:


-Water resources and their deployment

-Icebergs, glaciers, permafrost and snow cover in changing climates

-Irrigation and salination as environmental problems

-Fish, fisheries and fishing (freshwater and saltwater)

-Water pollution and water treatment

-Water-based recreational pursuits

-Flooding, drought and climate change


-Environmental impacts of agricultural practices and food industries

-Politics of food production and consumption

-Food and sensory history

-Food, terroir and sense of place

-Food, environment and advertising

-Culinary choices and eco-activism

-Animal husbandry and agricultural history

-Famines, harvest failures and malnutrition


-Travel, tourism and the fossil fuel economy

-Oil, gas, coal and nuclear industries

-Energy disasters: oil spills, strip mining and nuclear accidents

-"Green" energy: harnessing the sun, wind and waves

-"Greening" of the energy sector

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DutchDubai // The Interconnection of Water, Energy and Food presented at the Dutch Pavilion at the Expo 2020 in Dubai, UAE

The Dutch pavilion in the World Expo, hosted by Dubai in the United Arab Emirates in 2020, will focus on the interconnection of water, energy and food. As the second-largest exporter of agricultural products in the world, the Netherlands wants to support collaboration as well as minimising the footprint of our interactive ecosystem by building the pavilion with local resources and locally rented building materials.

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